The latest from Game 2 of the Stanley Cup Final between the Chicago Blackhawks and Tampa Bay Lightning, at Amalie Arena on Saturday night. All times listed are Eastern:
The Chicago Blackhawks say they're approaching Game 2 of the Stanley Cup Final as a must win situation, even though they rallied for a 2-1 win in the series opener.
The Lightning scored in the first five minutes and used a defense-first game plan to protect the lead perfectly until Chicago scored twice during a two-minute span in the third period to escape with the victory.
After a two day break, Lightning coach Jon Cooper could increase playing time for star Steven Stamkos, who wasn't on the ice for the final 51 seconds of Game 1.
Cooper gave a testy response Saturday morning when asked whether he plans to play Stamkos more. The player who's led the league twice in goals scored played just over 17 minutes in Game 1, more than 2 minutes less than his average during the regular season.
"I don't know what that means. Should I just play him the whole game, like all 60?" Cooper said.
When the reporter suggested maybe the three-time All-Star maybe should play somewhere between 18 and 22 minutes, Cooper fired back.
"Eighteen, OK. So if he plays 20 minutes, I should give him two more shifts," the coach said, "I'll think about that tonight."
Stamkos scored 43 goals during the regular season, ranking second in the NHL.
Stamkos led Lightning forwards in playing time during the regular season. Five other forwards — Ondrej Palat, Tyler Johnson, Alex Killorn, Valtteri Filppula and Nikita Kucherov all were on the ice more during Game 1.
Game 2 of the Stanley Cup Final is the 200th NHL playoff game for Blackhawks coach Joel Quenneville, who guided Chicago to Stanley Cup titles in 2010 and 2013.
He's the third coach to reach that plateau, joining Scotty Bowman (353) and Al Arbour (209). His 112 postseason wins also rank third all-time behind Bowman (223), currently a senior advisor for the Blackhawks, and Arbour (123).
Bowman, who lives in Sarasota, Florida, is at Amalie Arena for the final. He has won 13 Stanley Cups, including a record nine as a coach. The other four have come in management roles, two with the Blackhawks.
Asked which is more difficult, coaching in the Final or watching from his seat in the press box, the Hall of Famer said: "It's tougher watching because when you're coaching you can do something about it. When you're in the press box you can't do anything."
There's a good side to not being behind the bench, too.
"You can't get criticized if you do something stupid," he said, laughing.
Lightning rookie left wing Jonathan Drouin said he'll skate with the team in warmups on Saturday before Game 2 of the Stanley Cup Final.
The third overall pick in the 2013 draft has been a healthy scratch for 10 consecutive games, dating to Game 4 of Tampa Bay's second-round series against Montreal. He's appeared in just three postseason games, and concedes it's not easy to retain confidence when you're not playing.
He vowed earlier Saturday to be ready if Cooper inserts him into the lineup.
"There's not much I can do about it,' Drouin said. "If it was my decision, I'd be on the ice every night."
The rookie said he understands why he's not playing as much as he'd like, however that doesn't make it any easier to accept.
"Look at our team, our depth. They're the reason we're in the Stanley Cup. We have a lot of good forwards and a lot of good D. It's a hard lineup to crack," Drouin said. "You look, Mark Barberio is a really good defenseman and has trouble getting in any night. Same for me. It is hard, though."
Cooper would not say whether Drouin would play. He didn't sound overly concerned, though, about how well the young forward might be capable of playing after a long layoff.
"Your job as a player, you have to be a pro. You have to make yourself ready," Cooper said.
The Blackhawks say they need to play a lot better than they did in the series opener if they expect to achieve their ultimate goal — a third championship in six years.
Captain Jonathan Toews said the team is approaching Game 2 of the Stanley Cup Final on Saturday as if they're playing a Game 7, going as far as to say Chicago needs to redeem itself for a less than stellar performance in the opener.
"At the end of the day we got the result we wanted, but that doesn't mean we can be satisfied with the performance that we had," Toews said. "We know it's going to take much more than that to continue to win and have success in this series, and that's what we're focused on."
Former Tampa Bay goaltender Manon Rheaume, the only woman to appear in a NHL game, is here as a guest of the Lightning and promoting a movie about her career entitled "Between The Pipes."
She signed with the Lightning in 1992 and appeared in one period of an exhibition game against the St. Louis Blues at the Florida State Fairgrounds, where the then-expansion franchise played in its first season in an exposition hall converted into a 10,000-seat hockey arena.